Validation of a Quality-of-Life Scale for Women with Bladder Pain Syndrome/Interstitial Cystitis

Published in: Quality of Life Research, v. 21, no. 9, Nov. 2012, p. 1665-1670

Posted on RAND.org on January 01, 2011

by Laura M. Bogart, Marika Booth, Marc N. Elliott, J. Quentin Clemens, Sandra H. Berry

PURPOSE: To validate a disease-specific scale to measure the impact of symptoms of bladder pain syndrome/interstitial cystitis (BPS/IC), a condition that affects up to 6.5% of US women. METHODS: Participants were drawn from the RAND Interstitial Cystitis Epidemiology (RICE) Study, a telephone probability survey of 146,231 US households. Women who met RICE BPS/IC symptom criteria (n = 3,397) completed the 6-item RAND Bladder Symptom Impact scale (RICE BSI-6). The RICE BSI-6 was adapted from a scale used to assess the impact of diabetes on life and sexuality and modified based on expert input on face validity and focus group work; items specific to diabetic symptoms were eliminated. Validated scales of symptom severity, mental- and physical-health-related quality of life (QoL), depression, coping, and perceived control were used to assess convergent validity. RESULTS: The RICE BSI-6 (α = 0.92) was significantly related to greater symptom severity, worse general mental- and physical-health-related QoL, more severe depression symptoms, and lower perceived control over life in general and over BPS/IC symptoms (P values < .05). It was also associated with less use of distancing coping (P < .05). CONCLUSION: The RICE BSI-6 shows excellent internal consistency and strong convergent validity. It can be used to examine the effects of psychosocial and treatment interventions on QoL among women with BPS/IC.

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